FAQs

Privacy
In line with the National Privacy Principles- Your medical record is a confidential document. It is the policy of this practice to maintain security of personal health information at all times and to ensure that this information is only available to authorised members of staff.

Reminders and Recalls

Patients are offered this service for various follow up appointment eg: pap smears. If you don’t want to be on a recall system, please advise receptionist or nurse. The practice participates in national/state or territory reminder systems/registers (subject to informed patient consent)

Patient Feedback

We care about the quality of the service we provide. If you wish to make any suggestions or criticism please discuss them with your doctor or the reception staff. If you prefer you can contact the Health Services Commissioner on 1800 136 066 or (03) 8601 5200.

Billing

Clinic visits are bulkbilled for normal consultations on weekdays AND weekends. If you have a current health care card or pension card please present it to the receptionist along with your Medicare card when you arrive for each visit. TAC and workcover accounts are charged to the patient on the day if they have not yet received a claim number. Other services such as pre-employment and insurance medical do not have Medicare rebate and are charged and attract a GST charge.

Appointments

Routine appointments are made every 10 minutes. If you feel you may require more time with the doctor please book a longer appointment. Longer consultations will be needed for medical reports, e.g. Pre- Employment Medical – Please check with the receptionist. Emergency cases are treated as quickly as possibly depending on the urgency. By running on an appointment system, we try to keep waiting time to a minimum, however, delays do occur from time to time and preference is given to those with appointments. If you are unable to attend your appointment, please call two hours prior to cancel, as a charge may apply for missed appointments.

Test Results

All tests are examined by the referring doctor. However, you are advised to come in if you wish to discuss your results. The clinic will contact you if the doctor feels that the test results need further action. Patients should be seen by the doctor who ordered the test to ensure continuity of care.

Phone Calls   

If you call wanting to speak to a doctor, your call might not be taken straight away unless it is an emergency. The receptionist will usually take a message and the doctor will call you back as soon as possible.

 Locum Services

After hours medical service is provided by Doctor Doctor – phone number 13 26 60

Telehealth – Information for Patients

As part of the health system response to the COVID-19 outbreak, you may be offered a consultation with your GP or clinical nurse by phone or video – known as telehealth – instead of a usual face to face consultation.

This is an important step to protecting your health and that of your health care team while enabling you to continue to receive medical care and advice from the comfort and safety of your own home.

What is telehealth? Telehealth typically uses your mobile phone or video to connect you with your health care provider without you having to leave your current location.

  • Am I eligible for a telehealth consultation? Telehealth was already being used to deliver medical services, for eligible patients, particularly in rural and remote areas to avoid unnecessary travel.
  • As part of the Australian Government’s response to COVID-19, health professionals are being asked to use telehealth where clinically appropriate and necessary to support social distancing.
  • New MBS items have been introduced to provide telehealth services to vulnerable people in the community or to those in self-isolation.
  • It is important to note that telehealth may not be appropriate for the management of all medical conditions and a face-to-face consultation may still be needed.
  • Your GP will discuss this with you and whether a face-to-face consultation needs to take place or can be postponed to a later date.
  • If you have any questions about your suitability for a telehealth consultation and what it involves, please contact this Clinic

For more information on the Australian Government’s response to COVID-19 including telehealth arrangements visit www.health.gov.au.

How does a telehealth appointment work? A telehealth appointment is like a normal appointment, only conducted by phone or video whilst you are home instead of you coming to the Clinic.

  • You may need to ring the clinic or practice, or they will ring you to schedule the appointment.
  • By accepting this appointment, you consent to having your consultation conducted via telehealth.
  • If you are a continuing patient, this Clinic will already have your medical information about your history, medications and other relevant factors.
  • Your Doctor will discuss any question you may have during the Telehealth appointment to assist with your management.
  • It is your choice whether you agree to have other people present.
  • You can choose to have family members or carers to be present during the appointment and use interpreter services.
  • You may ask any of the people present to leave the call or room at any time if you wish to talk privately with your Doctor.

How do I prepare for my telehealth appointment? Your telehealth appointment can work best by taking these measures:

  • Make sure you have your mobile phone turned ON!! At least 10 minutes prior to the appointment.
  • Make sure you are ready at least 10 minutes early, particularly if there is any technology you need to start/set up.
  • Try to find a quiet space to ensure confidentiality and avoid distractions.
  • Think about the questions you want to ask in your consultation beforehand.
  • Have a pen and paper to hand in case you want to take any notes.
  • Speak clearly so your voice can be picked up by your microphone.
  • For video consultations, look at the camera so you can achieve good eye contact with your Doctor.

Informed consent

  • In accepting the appointment and the phone or video call you are consenting to the consultation being held by telehealth. However, it is important that you ask any questions you may have about any limitations of a telehealth consultation.
  • If you have any concerns before or at any time during the consultation, please discuss these with your Doctor or nurse.

Will my telehealth appointments be confidential?

Yes, just like any regular medical appointment, consultations provided through telehealth will be private and confidential. Your Doctor or nurse will be relying on phone and videoconferencing systems that meet the relevant State and Territory and Commonwealth privacy legislation and security standards.

Can my telehealth appointment be recorded?

To minimise the risks of data breach, it is recommended that the appointments not be recorded by either patients or health practitioners.

Do I have the right technology to participate in a telehealth consult?

  • Telehealth is private, secure and easy to use. You can use most laptops, smartphones and tablets. You will need:

o   A reliable phone or internet connection.

o   If you are using your laptop or desktop, make sure you have speakers, a microphone and a camera for video consultations.

o   A private and quiet space where you can do the consultation.

What about any follow up?

  • Your Doctor may email you relevant documents or make alternate arrangements for you to get these forms – for example prescriptions, blood testing and medical imaging forms, information handouts. Scripts and Request forms maybe sent directly to a pharmacy or path collection centre or Imaging Centre. This will be agreed upon prior between you and your Doctor

o   You should print out these documents and keep them safe.

o   Make a follow-up booking if needed.

  • What are the payment and billing procedures around telehealth consultations?. If you are eligible under the Government’s new COVID-19 telehealth services, your Doctor may be able to bulk-bill these telehealth services, meaning your appointment will be fully covered by Medicare.
  • What if I have questions? If you have any questions about whether a telehealth consultation may be suitable for you or what it might involve, please contact your Doctor.

Please note that the information on this document is for general guidance purposes only. All information has been sourced from both national and international advice and is subject to change rapidly as new information becomes available. This information does not replace information provided directly to you by your medical practitioner.

Acknowledgement: This factsheet was developed by using information from the Australian Government Department of Health and telehealth guidance documents from Alfred Health and Eastern Health.